John Pavlovitz – A Letter to Survivors of Sexual Assault

John Pavlovitz

To every person who has survived harassment, abuse, or violation:

Dear Friend,

I’ve been thinking about you and wanted you to hear a few things today, in case you never hear them for anyone else. I so hope this reaches you.

I imagine these days must be difficult for you.

Not that every day isn’t difficult given what you’ve endured, but I imagine these are especially painful times—
to see the headlines and the hashtags, and to be continually reminded of the personal hell you’ve walked through;
to watch people debate the veracity of accusers,
to see survivors cross-examined by strangers,
to hear supposed adults suggest a child’s consent,
to listen to professed Christians defend predatory politicians using the Bible,
to see lawmakers take the side of the victimizers,
to witness admitted offenders being rewarded.

I can’t fathom what it all must feel like to bear the brunt of such enmity and violence.
The chronic pain it all manufactures must be more than your heart can handle,
the rage it generates within you, immeasurable.
I imagine it all causes you to silently relive the nightmares over and over again—and I wanted you to know that I’m so very sorry.

I’m sorry for the first time you had your story so terribly altered by another human being—and equally sorry for the countless times others have knowingly or unknowingly perpetuated that moment; for the way we have further preserved your pain and prolonged your grief. 

(Read the entire post HERE.)

Author: DanutM

Anglican theologian. Former Director for Faith and Development Middle East and Eastern Europe Region of World Vision International

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